Strategic communication specialist Jennifer Conley has taken the helm in Geelong’s quest to become a global leader in advanced fibre manufacture.
Deakin University this week welcomed Ms Conley as new chief executive officer (CEO) of Advanced Fibre Cluster Geelong.
Deakin Carbon Nexus director and cluster board member Derek Buckmaster described Ms Conley as a leader in industry and research collaboration.
“Her work boosting innovation and Australian success in advanced manufacturing are well known,” he said.
Ms Conley comes to the cluster after two decades working at the intersection of industry, research and government.
She was executive director of Australian Advanced Manufacturing Council and a communications adviser for Energy Australia before taking up the new role.
“I am very excited to be contributing to some of the most innovative companies and organisations in the advanced manufacturing sector in this country,” Ms Conley said.
“These are creative companies gaining access to high-value global supply chains with new solutions and products.
“Deakin’s role has been pivotal in the development and acceleration of advanced fibre technology so it is perfect that the Cluster will be based out of Deakin’s ManuFutures building.”
The cluster consists of several Geelong companies aiming to establish the region as a centre of excellence for advanced fibre and composites innovation.
Ms Conley will support cluster members in generating new opportunities and investment for their businesses and projects.
Geelong Manufacturing Council leads the cluster with support from Deakin University and engineering firm Austeng.
Geelong Manufacturing Council CEO David Peart said Geelong had all the hallmarks for success in cutting edge fibre production with its rich history of success in manufacturing.
“The members of the cluster are dynamic companies and Jennifer’s appointment as a senior leader in this field will help accelerate their efforts to become world leaders.”
A $300,000 Victorian Government grant made the appointment possible, according to Deakin University.
Deakin University bolstered that investment with a further $200,000.